A Volatile Concert Site
The blasts Wednesday afternoon forced evacuation of part of the downtown for several hours. The blasts caused some property damage but no injuries, said Macomb County Sheriff Mark Hackel.
It happened as concertgoers were lined up for a performance by the Goo Goo Dolls at the Emerald Theatre. The concert was canceled.
Goo Goo Dolls drum technician Shawn Dealey, 21, of Winnipeg, Manitoba, was about 10 feet from one of the utility holes when it blew up.
“I felt it, and then I heard the big explosion,” he told The Detroit News. “I then headed back to the theater to get everyone out.”
A DTE Energy Co. spokesman said the day’s unusually warm weather led to a spike in demand for electricity as people turned on air conditioners.
“All of a sudden, we have a hot day and there was a surge in the load, which caused the explosion in the manhole,” power company supervisor Bill Heinrich told The Macomb Daily.
He said the cable failure apparently ignited gases that had built up underground.
“We have to just be thankful that no one was hurt,” said Mayor Barb Dempsey.